Tigers - The Masters of the Chase
The great day has finally arrived.
It is very difficult to get here, the Asia Cup Final, where the other three teams are India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
Once you get here, just being able to say, "We were good enough to reach the final," is not good enough. If you were a worthy finalist, you would either say, "We did it !" after winning it or "We should have made it ..." if you didn't win.
This is the situation the Tigers are in.
They have it in them to deliver. Irrespective of whether they win the toss, they should put up a clinical performance like they did against India and Sri Lanka and then the result will take care of itself. I believe that Pakistan would crumble today under pressure if the Tigers stay focused and firm.
Sri Lanka made many mistakes against Pakistan and Bangladesh made some mistakes too against Pakistan in the lung opener of the tournament. Had Bangladesh met Pakistan after one of their wins, Pakistan would have gone down, on their current form. Pakistan's bowling was hapless against India and they had no answers to power hitting by the Virat Kohli and Co.
So the Tigers are in the final with a performance more solid than their rivals'.
If Bangladesh wins the Toss, irrespective of the pitch and other conditions - they may not be much different from a few days ago - they should put Pakistan in and continue the good work with bowling and fielding as they did in the two previous games. The Tigers are now the Masters of the Chase.
If Bangladesh is asked to bat first, a big total - 350 or will be needed to be safe and they have the batting to do it. A solid opening stand followed by some brisk hitting will be the way forward. Ajmal will not pose much of a problem to the Bangladeshi batsmen as they are very good players of spin, thanks to the good spin bowling they encounter locally. Umal Gul will be frustrated today with unhelpful conditions, unless the batsmen feel sorry for him and make unforced errors.
If the Tigers are complacent or over-awed, the Pakistanis will be all over them for sure.
It is also true that if the Pakistanis play to their true potential, it will be like a clash of the Titans.
I hope that the people of Bangladesh would have their dream realised tonight. How happy would they be !